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Eyes to the Skies

Morning Falcon Watch-and a Canadian visitor 8-29-15

August 29th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was a mostly sunny morning with a starting temperature of 57 (F) 14 (C)

I started my watch at the north end of Seneca Towers with Billie and Seth on the top window ledge across from each other just like yesterday. There was a tiny piece of food hanging over the edge in front of Buffalo Billie so I believe breakfast had been served.


I got a tweet from watcher Dana that she saw a falcon on the peak  of the roof at the closed down Medley Center mall in Irondequoit. I opted to leave Seneca Towers to check it out. When I arrived at the north side of the mall I could see it immediately as it looked big to me-so probably a female.


I couldn’t get any closer from that side so I went around to the south side parking lot. My first leg shot didn’t show a leg band on this adult but after a few more pics it became visible. It also had a fascinator on its beak.


It was in hunt mode with its choice of starlings, sparrows, mourning doves or pigeons that were flying all over the place.  It was preening, stretching and scratching as it thought about what bird to go after.



It made a choice and flew off at 8am to the west behind the next peaked roof.


I drove down to where I could see it on a round exhaust type roof structure on the roof where the carousel is housed in the mall.


It stayed there for about half an hour then it crouched down as 2 mourning doves came flying in and landed on the lower roof in front of us both. It watched them for a couple minutes then turned, spread its wings and flew after a pigeon to the other side of the mall out of view.



The flight pics show some frazzled feathers so I believe this big falcon is molting. It returned unsuccessful in its hunt and landed on the front of the roof peak above the carousel where I was able to get pics of the left leg band. It’s a Canadian adult Falcon with a black over black (Canadian colors) S/39 band.


It took off for the last time around 8:45am and didn’t return after flying north out of view.


We’re waiting for information back from our friends in the Canadian Peregrine Foundation as to who and where this falcon is from.  I left for downtown going past Seneca Towers so I could clock the distance between it and the Medley Center-2.5 miles. I find it interesting because the distance between ST and the Times Square nest site is also 2.5 miles and from there over to the Brighton site is 2.5 miles as well. Just a something to ponder.

I arrived on the Andrews St. bridge downtown at 9:10am and spotted a falcon on the northeast corner of the Kodak Office launchpad.


While I was driving down State St. it flew around to the southwest corner of the launchpad so I went to Verona St. on the west side of Kodak to see it from a closer vantage point. It was Beauty and she too was in hunt mode watching pigeons below her.


I left her to it and took a ride around downtown but saw no more falcons. As I was exiting downtown I passed the Beautyful one who was still on Kodak at 9:45am when I ended my watch. I’m sure you know that I was smiling after seeing a falcon that was visiting from Canada or has it got a nest site in the area!? Stay tuned! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s videos featuring our little Canadian friend







Morning Falcon Watch-a visit from Genesee 8-28-15

August 28th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

A bit of a chill in the air this morning at 52 (F) 11 (C) degrees but the sun shone bright with blue skies

Last night (Thursday) a falcon flew past my living room window as I sat in my recliner-this prompted me to get up and go out to the west side balcony to have a look /see. Once out there I spotted Seth on the south side ledge of the Veteran’s Memorial Bridge. I looked down as a juvie started whining as it flew at the tree top level toward the north end of the building out of view. Seth took off a couple minutes later and it went quiet as well with no more sightings.


This morning I saw nobody from the balcony but when I checked the north end of Seneca Towers (ST) from the back of the residents’ parking lot I was greeted by Billie and Seth on the top window ledge. I’ve not seen Billie up there for a very long time.


Around 6:38am while I was taping them, Billie flew east followed by Seth a minute later-they didn’t return so I left for downtown.


From the Andrews St. bridge I spotted Dot.ca (DC) on the northeast corner of the Kodak Office (KO) playpen netting so I went down to State St. near Brown St. for closer viewing. During my commute DC flew up to the northeast corner of the launchpad then back down to the netting as I pulled over.


While I was taping him, DC flew off toward the river and went into a stoop before leaving my field of vision just before 7am.


When he didn’t return I left to search downtown and I didn’t have to look for long as I spotted Beauty on the base of Mercury from the Court St. bridge. I whipped over to the Broad St. bridge (BSB)  to get closer to the Beautyful one. She had a small piece of meat that she picked up in her beak to show me.


There were bees buzzing around her head as she stood there over her small package. At the time I thought perhaps she wasn’t eating it because there was a juvie to give it too. She flew off while I was looking down in the river so I don’t know if she took it with her or not but she definitely wasn’t eating it.

img_0028-hi-beautyfulimg_0031-bees-bugging-beauty<Click to see the bees

So I set out once again in search of and ended up back by KO with DC who was back on the northeast corner of the playpen netting. At this time Donna (thanks a lot) tweeted out that there were 2 falcons on the Frontier Communications Tower so I beat feet over there to find Beauty on the north platform railing and a juvie on the west side railing with its back to me.


Based on size I thought this was Genesee, I drove over to Plymouth Ave. to view the juvie from the front-it flew off to the north just as I started to tape it.


I caught up with this juvie around 8am as it was perched on the 16th floor southeast corner of KO. From State and Platt St. I could also see that DC was still up on the KO netting and Beauty remained on FCT.  It wasn’t long before I was given a few leg shots to ID Genesee as the juvie that keeps coming back home.



After looking around his surroundings Genesee flew off at 8:17am, circled the tower twice then knocked dad off the netting and took his place as DC flew east. Genesee spent lots of time preening in a hyper fast mode that had his head spinning so fast I thought he might need traction when he was done! lol


At 9am Genesee flew east toward the river going into a stoop just like dad had done earlier before going behind the apartment building I was parked next to on State St. by Platt St.


I didn’t find him again and I hope he keeps dropping by for these little visits. I left for ST where I found Seth on his north end top window ledge as I crossed the Veteran’s Memorial Bridge around 9:30am.


I checked him out from East Ridge Rd. near St. Paul Street as he kept looking down at something below him either on the bridge,in the river or the trees in the gorge. I left him to check those places from the west balcony of my 16th floor at ST but all I found was an Osprey to the south in the Osprey tree on the west bank of the river gorge.


I ended my watch at 10am after having been given plenty of reasons to produce smiles galore! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s videos of which there are many and a photo album with more pics











Morning Falcon Watch 8-26-15

August 26th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was overcast with a temperature of 59 (F)  15 (C)

I found  a falcon on the north end of Seneca Towers (ST) top window ledge with its back to me. I have no idea who it was but it was on Seths’ spot-it could have been a juvie, I just don’t know. It flew off when I was looking at the pic of it.


No other falcons seen there today so I left for downtown. I spotted Dot.ca (DC) from the Andrews St. bridge as he was on the north corner top I-beam of OCSR with his back to me.


He couldn’t be seen from State St. so I drove over to Bragdon Place at the north end of the Radisson Hotel to observe. From there I still could only see his back until he turned his head and stood up to stretch.


I stayed with him for nearly 2 hours as he stayed perched in the same position barely moving. He pulled out a feather as he is in a molt and he usually is pretty inactive during that time as witnessed today. Molting is hard on them. I left DC once during that time to look unsuccessfully for other falcons and returned.


The pigeons and gulls that hang out in the Sister Cities Pedestrian bridge/Radisson area kept me entertained as the pigeons would gather then fly straight toward me. That was a cool sight to see and there was an especially pretty one preening on top of a lamp post while the gulls took turns knocking each other off the flag poles on the bridge.

img_0012-pretty-falcon-foodimg_0013-pigeon-on-a-lamp-postimg_0015-more-relatives-arrive<Click it


I believe DC was napping-at any rate I left him about 8:20am to go in search of and I spotted Beauty on the northeast corner of Widows Walk (WW) from the Court St. Bridge. On my way to Basin St. in the hole to watch her I took a pic from the intersection of Broad St. and Exchange Blvd. while stopped at the traffic light.


She did some preening and stretching while I taped her, then she flew off at 8:51am. It happened fast and I was fixed on her in my little LCD camera screen and didn’t see DC fly up to take her place right after. When I checked my snippet video I saw him fly up to the corner his mate had been on seconds before him. I was busy watching the Beautyful one fly over to the base of Mercury. I thought I saw movement on the northwest corner of Widows Walk and so I drove to Fitzhugh St. to check it out but DC was gone when I got there.


In my travels today I saw 2 more murals painted by Sarah Rutherford on a liquor store on South Ave.

Click both of them to see the full version

img_0036-another-sarah-rutherford-mural img_0039-sarah-rutherford-art

I had to get going and ended my watch at 9:15am with smiles for having seen both of our resident downtown adult Peregrine Falcons! :)

Click on the links to see today’s videos



Morning Fledge Watch 8-25-15

August 25th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

The sun was bright at the start of the day with a temperature of 59 (F) 15 (C) but clouds are now taking over


My first look from the west side balcony of my 16th floor apartment here at Seneca Towers I didn’t see anything. I was just about to leave when I spotted a juvie flying near the Osprey tree south of here. It looked like it would land on another tree further south when another juvie buzzed by it and then they were both off to the races. Talon tagging and flying together over the river then out of view further south into the tree canopy. That was a fun start to my watch! As I rounded the corner in my parking lot I spotted Seth and Billie on the top window ledge south end of the building. Seth left while I was parking my car but Billie remained.


I didn’t stay long as she seemed to get settled in. As I scanned downtown with my binoculars from the Andrews St. bridge I spotted the back of a falcon on the east side arch of Kodak Office. I drove down to Brown and State St. where I could see the Beautyful salmon colored front of Beauty. She was looking north very intently.


She stretched a little and looked east once or twice but she was focused on something to the north for the most part. Seneca Towers is in that direction and I had to wonder if she was watching falcons up there. Anyway, Beauty flew north at 7:20am and I watched as far as I could before she disappeared behind buildings.


It would be 45 minutes later before I found her again as I was driving thru the intersection of Broad St. and South Ave. from checking the east side I saw a falcon flying toward OCSR and then it landed on the very top round restaurant roof. It took off and circled above the building a couple times then flew southwest to the jail tower and landed on the top arm. I drove to Troup St. for a closer look and to ID it as Beauty.


She was facing south but looking north for most of the 10 minutes I observed her until she flew north at 8:23am.


I never found her again and ended up going home after a quick check in the High Falls gorge. I found Seth on the south side top window ledge at the east end of it which is usually where Billie perches. He was in hunt mode and busy watching the sparrows below in my parking lot.


Seth flew off once while I was looking away but soon returned and started preening a bit.


I had to get going thus ending my watch at 9:30am. It made smile to see the juvies down by the river this morning as I thought they had moved on! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s videos




Morning Fledge Watch 8-24-15

August 24th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was an overcast morning with a temperature of 63 (F) 17 (C)

Billie and Seth were on the south end top window ledge to greet me this morning as I started my watch. They were facing each other at each end of the ledge. I started on Seth Green Drive then drove out onto St. Paul St. so I could get a better view of Seth. While I was taping them Buffalo Billie flew south and returned 1 minute later and that was the extent of the action.



This was the first time in a very long time I’ve seen this pair so close together-they’ve been a little busy raising their boys whom I haven’t seen in a couple days.


I left them as they were for downtown and as  I was pulled over on the Andrews St. bridge I spotted Beauty on the bottom arm of the Frontier Communications tower. (FCT)


I went over to Fitzhugh St. in front of the Sister Cities garage to watch the Beautyful one. The wind was blowing her feathers as she looked around the area.


Beauty preened a little as the sun broke thru the thick cloud cover for a minute or two. She then walked a couple feet to her right.


At 7:25am Beauty flew off to the south.


I left and ended up on the east side behind HSBC where I saw a falcon fly to the southeast corner and land with its back to me. It looked small to me so I think it was Dot.ca or Genesee. I had enough time to get one pic before he took off.


I saw it flying over near Midtown sending all the pigeons in the area scattering every which way. He landed 3 more times on the same corner staying only long enough for a quick look then off again. I kept losing him behind the buildings in the area as he flew in and out of the area and then I didn’t see him again. I had to get going early today so when I found Beauty on the way out of downtown on the northeast corner of the Kodak Office launchpad I didn’t stay too long.


I ended my watch at 8:15am with a smile ! :)

Click on the links below to view today’s videos




Morning Fledge Watch 8-23-15

August 23rd, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was sunny with blue skies and a temperature of 57 (F) 14 (C) to start this morning

I found Billie on the top window ledge south side of Seneca Towers (her spot) as I started my day. She did a little preening and stretching before flying southeast after sharing space with me for  few minutes.


I left for downtown when Buffalo Billie didn’t return. My first stop is always the Andrews St. and today I was pleasantly surprised to have 3 falcons in view from there. Now, who to check first-I opted for Kodak Office (KO).


Dot.ca (DC) was on the northeast corner of playpen netting on KO. Next I was able to ID Genesee as the falcon on the top arm of the Frontier Communications tower (FCT) when I saw his silver right leg band. And last I checked Times Square (TSB) to find that it was Beauty under the northeast wing.


So back to Genesee to observe him while he’s still around as I can see Beauty and DC all winter. He was busy while I watched as he preened, stretched, scratched, pooped a couple times and managed to get in a short nap while watching his surroundings.


Oh and Genesee also had lots to say too!


Genesee graced me with his presence for about 20 minutes then he spread his gorgeous juvie wings and flew northwest at 7:22am.


I went north toward KO and found DC to still be on the northeast corner of the playpen but no sign of Genesee so I left DC again.


The Beautyful one was still on TSB under the northeast wing with her back to the world so I parked in front of the Blue Cross Arena on Exchange Blvd. to get her profile. She too did some preening and stretching.


At 8am Beauty turned to the north and spread her wings leaving my field of vision. I thought she had flown off but when I drove over to the hole parking lot I could see that she had just moved to the north side of the ledge. Then I found out why Beauty went over to the other side-I heard a juvie whining and spotted a head peeking up from the north side of the back lower section of TSB.


I decided to go across the street to the parking lot next to TSB for a closer view. I could see more than just his head from there as he continued to yell at mom.


I thought maybe he was saying feed me but after a while he started plucking feathers and eating something he had under him. So then I thought he was probably saying this is my food and you can’t have it!! teehee


Beauty flew south just before 8:30am and Genesee finished eating and went to the back of the ledge out of view. I was in need of my own breakfast so I left for home where I found no falcons ending my watch at 9am. How nice to see Genesee again today giving me lots of smiles! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s vidoes







Morning Fledge Watch 8-22-15

August 22nd, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was a bit cloudy to start with a temperature of 60 (F) 16 (C)

Last night at Seneca Towers (ST) from the west balcony I spotted Sellie on the south side bridge ledge eating around 6:15pm. While I was on the balcony I also spotted an osprey in the osprey tree again south of here up river. And I took a couple pics of the small Koi fish pond below across from the main entrance to ST.



He finished eating about a half hour as I observed him from the window at the north end of my 16th floor where I had a bit of a closer view. Joyce was on the west side of the river and saw another larger juvie join Sellie a while later after I went back to my apartment. I think Cadence may be hanging out here the last couple days as I thought I’d seen a big juvie as well.

img_0049-sellieSellie done eating

Fast forward to this morning-I spotted a falcon on the south top window ledge but it flew off heading east just as I came to a stop. I waited for it a little bit then headed south to downtown where I had quite a falconless watch until the very end. In my travels I spotted the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile at the Radisson Hotel and I watched the river inhabitants from the Broad St. bridge to entertain myself.

As always click on all my pics to see the full version



During another trip around downtown I took pics of flowers to keep me from getting bored while our falcons played hide and seek (mostly hide). Hold your cursor over the pics to see the caption that tells where the pics were taken.



I searched for an hour before leaving to run an errand and when I got back the roads were coned off for a running race and most roads were blocked off for the Puerto Rican parade and festival. Traffic was backed up and I didn’t have too many places I could go look for falcons. Floats for the parade were turning down Andrews St. at State St. and lining up on the bridge. I managed to spot Beauty on the bottom arm of the Frontier Communications tower from down on  State St. near Kodak Office.


I had to leave from there as I was in the lane for the runners and just before I pulled away a bunch of motorcycles for the parade went around me followed by a runner.


It was quite the strange falcon watch this morning but the Beautyful one came thru to give me reason to smile! :)

Click on the links below to see my videos




Morning Fledge Watch 8-21-15

August 21st, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

What a difference a day makes! Yesterday morning it was 77 (F) degrees and muggy when I started my watch-today 64 (F) 18 (C) and no humidity.

Just before 8pm last night I saw 2 falcons flying south over the river at tree top level. They went past the osprey tree (OT) which had one in it at the time. It looked like a juvie that buzzed the osprey then they both flew off with the osprey returning to land back in the OT. It dropped what I believe was a fish and then a juvie landed in the tree above it.


A few minutes later the juvie was gone and I noticed another osprey in a tree further up river from the OT. As you can see, the leaves in the gorge are turning color already.


15 minutes later as I was on the west balcony I heard a juvie and saw it fly in from the north and go above the building. It reappeared at the south end before flying east out of view just before dark.

This morning I neither saw or heard a falcon at Seneca Towers. It was a while before I found any falcons downtown but as I was stopped on the Broad St. bridge I spotted one on the top arm of the jail tower and one on the middle arm of the Frontier Communications tower (FCT). I decided to go to Troup St. to check the jail bird first-it turned out to be Dot.ca (DC).


I left right away to check out who was on FCT. I had a bad angle on it from the City Hall parking lot but I thought it was a juvie. It took off while I was checking my pic of it.


A few minutes later I spotted Beauty on the south side arch of Kodak Office (KO) preening. I then wondered if it had been Beauty on FCT with her dark coloring.


10 minutes later at 7:06am a juvie flew in jabbering and landed on the northeast corner of the 20th floor of KO. It was an old friend-Genesee!!!! I saw his silver right leg band confirming it was him-he hadn’t been seen for over a week and we thought he was gone for good. Or maybe it was him on HSBC yesterday morning or, as I suspected the bird on FCT a little while ago and not the Beautyful one. Still, the prodigal son has returned to downtown Rochester.


Since his back was to me I left my spot near State and Platt St. to go down to State and Brown St. where I had a better angle on him.


Genesee did some preening, pooped then walked to the south end of the ledge and flew off circling the tower and squawking no doubt at his mom on the arch.


Genesee came to rest on the northwest corner of the playpen netting still vocalizing. He may have been crying to mom to feed him as there was nothing in his crop. Genesee flew off around 7:30am circled the tower a few times then all went quiet.


I drove around to the south side of KO and could see that Beauty was gone as well. It would be nearly 2 hours before I saw another falcon. Just when I was about to leave downtown, from the Andrews St. bridge I spotted who I believe was DC because of the whiteness in the Powers nest box.


I ended my watch at 10am at Seneca Towers with no falcons present. What a nice surprise to see Genesee this morning making me smile! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s videos and a bonus video of an osprey from yesterday





Fledge Watch 8-20-15

August 20th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was a very balmy and humid 77 (F) 25 (C) degrees at 6am this morning with a busy breeze and partly to mostly cloudy skies

Today was the first time in a while that I didn’t see any falcons at Seneca Towers in the morning. Kids are branching out and the adults seem to be out there with them as well. I am however, still seeing at least one juvie downtown-I guess it’s not over til the fat lady sings eh!?

I found Dot.ca (DC) on the northeast corner of the Kodak Office playpen netting just about the same time as Shaky tweeted out that there was a falcon on the west corner top I-beam of OCSR. I stayed with DC briefly then went down to park on State St. across from the Rochester Plaza Hotel to see that it was Beauty on OCSR with her back to me.


After a few minutes the Beautyful one  took off heading southwest. As I looked up toward Times Square I thought I saw another falcon meet Beauty over Exchange Blvd. then they quickly went out of view.


I went in search of her and instead found a juvie on the southwest corner of HSBC on the east side of the river from Woodbury Blvd. I drove over to Chestnut St. for a closer look but I couldn’t get a clear enough pic to see if it had leg bands or not so I can’t say if it was one of ours or just one passing through our fair city. It was easy to see that it had a full crop though!

img_0027-juvie-on-hsbc img_0032-juvieimg_0036-juvie-with-full-cropimg_0049-juvie

This juvie flew off at 7:22am going in the direction of the river to the west.


10 minutes later I spotted a juvie on the 2nd arm of the Frontier Communications tower from the Andrews St. bridge. By the time I got over to check it out it was gone. I think it was the same one that was on HSBC.


After a look around for it I found Beauty and DC on KO from State and Platt St. She was on the northeast corner of the launchpad and he was below her on the left side of the east arch above the playpen.


I switched angles and drove down to Brown and State St. where I could see the front of DC. The lighting was not as good there but at least I wasn’t looking at his back from there.


They were both doing some preening-DC pooped and was napping as well.



I left them around 8:20am and headed for home to check for the ST falcons. I had no luck finding any falcons but when I got up to my apartment I spotted a Great Blue Heron and an Osprey in the same tree up river from ST on the west side bank. This is the same tree I’ve seen both species in before but not at the same time. The Osprey was eating a fish with its back to me. I officially ended my watch at 9:15am from my living room.


I guess if you can’t find falcons to make ya smile an Osprey and Great Blue Heron will do the trick! :)

Click on the links below to see today’s videos







Wednesday Evening Falcon Watch - 8/19/15

August 19th, 2015

By Rochester Falcon Watcher Carol P.

6:15 - 8:30 pm

It’s been sizzling hot here in Rochester, NY over the last few days.  Today was no exception, with temps reaching close to 90 degrees (F) and high humidity.  I decided to wait until early evening to head downtown to search for our falcons.

I arrived downtown at about 6:15 pm.  For about a 1/2 hour, I drove all over downtown Rochester looking for falcons.  Finally at 6:45 pm, I spotted a falcon on top of the RGS antenna.   I quickly parked my car and turned on my camera.  When I stepped out of my car to get a picture, the falcon was gone.

For the next 1 1/2 hours, I drove around downtown Rochester looking for falcons and not finding any.

As I was ending my watch and heading home, I made one last stop at the Frontier Communication Tower (FCT).  It was 8:20 pm and the sun had set.  But I was still able to see that there were two falcons on the tower.  One, an adult, was on the 2nd arm down from the top, facing southwest.  The 2nd falcon was on the southwest box below the platform with its back to me.  It was too dark for me to tell if it was a juvie or adult.  But, I could clearly hear a juvie vocalizing now and then.  So, there was a juvie up there.  Five minutes later, they were both gone.  It was time to end my watch.

Adult on FCT -8-19-15Juvie I Believe on FCT -8-19-15

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